NEWS CLIPS - May 2011

Guard Hut Appeal and Replacement
Following the Special General Meeting in early April we reported that the estimate cost of the minimum needs for the new Guard Hut, including appropriate upgrading of the surrounding area, was approx R 200 000. At the general meeting a few additional features to improve functionality and the dignity of the working environment of the guards were recommended. Hence it was agreed that expenditure be limited to R 250 000 or such lower amount that is raised.

As a result of the meeting, as well as a test appeal to those who were either non resident, or could easily respond, pledges had been received at that stage for slightly over half of the amount. At the end of the appeal period Keith Hollis expressed satisfaction. “I am thrilled to announce that the final amount pledged is R223183 from 70 members. This enables us to proceed immediately with the implementation of our plans and work is scheduled to commence in the first week of May. The new guard house designed by Andrew King of Frankenfeld & King Architects will provide a comfortable and effective working interior, protective of our equipment with decent ablutions and facilities for the guards to prepare beverages with microwave and wash up facilities.

As the new structure will be built on the same structure as the existing Guard Hut arrangements have been made for the contractor to provide temporary facilities for the guards during the 4 week construction period. The existing hut will be removed by Hayward Construction, the appointed contractor, and the contract price adjusted accordingly. Final details of the upgrading of the surrounding area are in the process of being finalised and this work will be undertaken once the building work is complete.”

Supervision will be undertaken by Paul Kotze, assisted by Johan De Bruyn and Mike St Quinton, all members of the LIRA committee.

On behalf of LIRA Keith has again committed that general funds of LIRA will not be used for this project...
Launch of Membership Campaign
The Chairman has advised that following the most successful Guard Hut Appeal a campaign is now being launched to sign up those residents who are not members of LIRA, or are in arrears with their contributions. Keith Hollis commented at the December Annual General Meeting of LIRA:

"There exists in the committee a great enthusiasm and desire to do so many things that would enhance and beautify the Island. The single but very frustrating obstacle is the lack of finance. The monthly cost per household is R250. In many other “gated complexes” the monthly levy is many times that. What exasperates is that if all households on the Island paid a levy we could easily finance all that should be done and what is desirable to do. Further the current levy could be maintained at current levels for some years!"

Vigorous discussion followed at this meeting (20th Dec) about the unfairness that over 20% of residents on the Island (100 homes) do not contribute to the cost of LIRA’S activities.

Keith emphasises that his committee is mindful that some residents currently cannot afford the levies. "We extend our grateful appreciation to those members who despite difficult financial circumstances nevertheless pay a reduced levy."

As the first step in the recently announced Membership Campaign Keith is writing individually to all non members, and those in arrears, drawing attention to the following.


Crime is increasing in Knysna! The main function of the Association is to provide security for the Island. We are fortunate to be able to site our security operation at the sole entry to the Island to maintain 24/7 monitoring and recording of all vehicle and pedestrian entry and exit. Our guards boast that they can recognize every vehicle owned by residents!

Allsound Security manages our guards and security operation on a contracted basis. Thus we enjoy the best of both worlds; a dedicated group of guards who monitor entry and exit and patrol the Island coupled with a professional organization able to respond rapidly when required. The regular reports which Allsound publish reflect that our security function is very effective compared with other areas of Knysna. Over 80 % of our levies are spent on maintaining our very effective security operation.

A comprehensive read of our new website reflects the many services in addition to security which the dedicated members of our committee perform for residents. LIRA liaises with Knysna Municipality and SAPS to implement measures to control massive day visitor influx over peak periods. There is continuing liaison with the Municipality in regard to road signage, the maintenance of Parks, refuse collection etc.


The beautiful Steenbok Nature Reserve will endure way into the future as a special preserve of natural beauty, protected from any developers, solely due the efforts of LIRA. We manage these magnificent garden parks and recreational areas which enthrall residents and visitors

The Problem

There is much we can do but frankly are “hamstrung” by lack of finance. If all residents paid levies so much more could be achieved. There may well be other reasons why you do not wish to participate. Keith is appealing to all concerned to share with him whatever that reason may be so that he can at least understand why you do not participate. Keith emphasises that he is happy to visit with you and you have his assurance of absolute confidentiality.

Stage Two

Stage two of the Membership Campaign will be personal visits to those who have not responded, to be conducted by members of the LIRA committee and any other members who volunteer to participate in the visitation campaign. It is the intention that these visits will not be “pressured sales pitches”, but rather simply an opportunity to give accurate and current information regarding LIRA activities and to ascertain impressions that individuals have of LIRA, suggestions as to how it could be made more relevant to your needs, and how you would feel if it was decided to disband LIRA.

If you are a fully paid member please join our membership campaign by bringing it to the notice of all Islanders with whom you interact.

How to join Click here for the Application Form, print it out, complete it and follow instructions. Link required

Chameleons in Steenbok Nature Reserve
These dwarf chameleons are only found in the Knysna area where their normal habitat is in the dense Knysna forests. They are about 12cm long and well adapted to living in trees, where they blend in with the gentle movement of leaves and catch insects with their amazing elastic tongues.

These two were found in the Steenbok Nature Reserve and provided this rare sighting of a male and female with the male in hot pursuit. It is understood that prior to dense urbanization on Leisure Isle this species of chameleons were often seen.

Like other chameleons they can rotate their eyes independently and change the colour of their skin. This is not done to match their background, but is influenced by temperature, light intensity and emotional state. Unlike other chameleons they give birth to live young, in litters of 5-15, rather than laying eggs. The newborn babies are immediately completely independent. The main predators of chameleons are snakes, birds (like the Fiscal Shrike and Burchell Coucal) and humans.

Website Gallery
In the March issue we asked readers to submit your photograph images for consideration for inclusion on the website Gallery. We have decided to extend the closing date till the end of May after which the Gallery will be changed to include your pics. The Knysna Photographic Club will be requested to judge the best on view. The winner will be awarded a magnificent A2 (60 cm x 40 cm) Pearl Print enlargement kindly sponsored by foto first.

Submit your pics to Margaret Richards per email to

Talk to Us
Ros, a new resident on Leisure Isle, responded to our first issue in connection with fencing options:

"I think palisade fencing is hideous, reminiscent of a factory premise/Gauteng, and should not be allowed on Leisure Isle as security is not an enormous problem and in any case the 1m palisade installed at some homes on LI is hardly a deterrent. Bought my house with same, and am getting rid of it a.s.a.p. and replacing with picket. Perhaps it is cheaper than other options? Wonder what other's think."

What do other readers think? Click here to send us an email. Let us know what’s on your mind - suggestions for future issues of News Clips or questions. Equally important let us have news for publication in the next issue.

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